Racism in football: Hulk's iconic screamer to silence Benfica fans in 2012

  • Kat Lucas

Many footballers around the world continue to take the knee as a stance against racism.

The scourge of discrimination has affected countless high-profile players this season. Shortly before the international break, Manchester United midfielder Fred was racially abused on social media after the defeat to Leicester City. 

Thierry Henry has since removed himself from online platforms until he sees media companies taking harassment more seriously. 

Sadly, while social media abuse is a relatively new problem which modern players have to navigate, the issue of racism within the game is long-standing.

Brazilian forward Hulk was subject to monkey chants on more than one occasion throughout his career. 

In one such game in 2012, Porto, with whom he spent four years, were facing Benfica. 

In the wake of appalling abuse from the stands, Hulk had the perfect answer – a 108km/h rocket to silence the racists. 

Porto went on to win 3-2. 

Ultimately, of course, there is no *right* way for players to deal with racism – it’s not something they should be subjected to in the first place. 

Dani Alves famously ate a banana which was thrown in his direction, before coolly taking a corner. 

Moments like that might be satisfying, but there can be no denying that more needs to be done to protect players.

Following Henry’s withdrawal from social media, there have been renewed calls for the likes of Twitter to verify accounts to prevent anonymous abuse, but so far there has been little progress made. 

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